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>There are few OSS projects that have done anything more than steal ideas from commercial software in terms of innovation. Programming languages are the only place I can think of that OSS is cutting edge.

Surely you're joking? Outlook is a crappy email client. Mutt which is older than I am, handles mail better than Outlook does, I hate using Outlook. It means archiving my mail every month (several accounts over several PST files over an a very high mail volume). Ever since it's beginning outlook was the crappiest mail software. You can't figure out what the hell it's doing and it crashes all the damn time without error or with generic/cryptic ones. The only way to fix it is to wipe your settings from the hard drive, and reset registry keys to defaults. And if that doesn't work reinstall office.

Not to mention compiz/beryl had desktop effects before any other operating system. Linux in the kernel level has removed the need for file polling, replacing it with iwatch. Linux has on demand file system and virtual file system mounting. There are hardly any drivers for file systems or virtual file systems on Windows. Dokan is the only place where you can get FUSE or SSH and the software is crappy.

MS to this day hasn't standardized it's own security structure (EX: runas.exe in XP will have the processes pass on administrator rights to all child processes 7 doesn't neither does Vista). And lets face it on the top of it's game Windows default security could have been over-riden by pressing cancel on the logon screen. On anything but a fickle consumer and ease level Windows and to some extent OSX (although the use of a BSD kernel and the growth of MacPorts mitigates this a bit) don't hold a candle to the features found in Linux.

You seem to equate success and innovation with sales and press releases. In this case you probably think that MS is doing something revolutionary by letting Xboxes read usb drives.




> Surely you're joking? Outlook is a crappy email client.

Surely you're joking. First, Outlook isn't for anyone who'd be comfortable operating mutt. Period. Second, sure, Outlook has stupid design-decisions. But nobody claimed that Outlook is perfect, it was argued that Outlook was better than Lotus Notes which is was competing against when it was launched. And it was (and is), leaps and bounds. Third, Outlook isn't just a mail client, it's an integrated communications suite. It has taken OSS years and years to catch up with this. You may not agree that it's a critical feature, but for millions of business users, it's a deal-breaker.

There's good innovation in the kernel-space, too, but user-facing apps are playing catch-up.


>Third, Outlook isn't just a mail client, it's an integrated communications suite. It has taken OSS years and years to catch up with this. You may not agree that it's a critical feature, but for millions of business users, it's a deal-breaker.

KDE has had very good PIM software for a while now even before KDE4. Kontact has always been a suite for that kind of stuff, and it's possible to do most things in Outlook in Kontact. Also if you're talking about Exchange and groupware servers there are a few for Linux like Zimbra. However I haven't even seen Fortune 500 companies make most of the use of Exchange features.

Also your measure for success is very shallow. Essentially you don't see OSS as competition, which belies your actual position and tells me that there's no point in arguing this with you considering your mind is made up about OSS. As far as I'm concerned all vendor software loses out because it's missing basic features from a IT management standpoint. Also from my experiences millions of business users are too stupid to use Outlook in any shape or form because they lack basic computer proficiency skills.


> Not to mention compiz/beryl had desktop effects before any other operating system.

You’re joking, right? Mac OS X has always had some sort of desktop effects. Hardware accelerated Quartz Extreme was part of 10.2 in 2002. And Exposé was introduced in 2003… All before Compiz/beryl.


You're right OSX did have Quarts and expose before linux did. I was talking about Microsoft Operating systems but I wasn't clear enough.


> Linux in the kernel level has removed the need for file polling, replacing it with iwatch

As long as we're comparing who did what first (as if that's relevant today), ReadDirectoryChangesW came in Windows 2000. inotify came in 2005.

> MS to this day hasn't standardized it's own security structure (EX: runas.exe in XP will have the processes pass on administrator rights to all child processes 7 doesn't neither does Vista)

Given that Vista overall has a rather different security structure from XP, I don't see how this is relevant.

> And lets face it on the top of it's game Windows default security could have been over-riden by pressing cancel on the logon screen

Amusingly, this just displays your own naivete. The only way to get security if someone has physical access is through cryptography. Pressing cancel on a local login screen is equivalent to booting into single user mode or just using a boot disk and wiping out the local administrator's password.

> You seem to equate success and innovation with sales and press releases.

Microsoft Research is the most prolific non-university academic CS research lab in the world. The people that work there are all truly brilliant. (disclosure: I did an internship there this summer)


>As long as we're comparing who did what first (as if that's relevant today), ReadDirectoryChangesW came in Windows 2000. inotify came in 2005.

Inotify was a replacement for dnotify. Which was there since 2.4. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dnotify

Also comparing the two subsystems is entirely wrong. ReadDirectoryChangesW is still a polling mechanism, inotify and dnotify are kernel level events.

>Amusingly, this just displays your own naivete. The only way to get security if someone has physical access is through cryptography. Pressing cancel on a local login screen is equivalent to booting into single user mode or just using a boot disk and wiping out the local administrator's password.

You're just being an obstinate child here. There's a difference when anyone can defeat your security, and when knowledgeable people can defeat your security. Why do company's take people of the premises when they're fired? Because it's easier for them to lash out, and cause damage. Well it's certainly easier for a passerby to break into your system by pressing cancel. Outside physical threats are always there, especially in the form of delivery men. What's the point of even password protecting something when the UPS guy can come and hit cancel cause he has 95 at home? Not only that but you still need a password for single user mode, and it would take a bit longer for him if he had a boot disk.

>Microsoft Research is the most prolific non-university academic CS research lab in the world. The people that work there are all truly brilliant. (disclosure: I did an internship there this summer)

This isn't about Microsoft Research, this is about Microsoft products. This is a completely irrelevant point. MSR is a fine institution which is a great place for academic papers, they don't generally develop products for Microsoft.


This isn't about Microsoft Research, this is about Microsoft products. This is a completely irrelevant point. MSR is a fine institution which is a great place for academic papers, they don't generally develop products for Microsoft.

Don't talk shit about stuff you know nothing about.


dnotify wasn't sensibly designed. inotify/ReadDirectoryChangesW are.

> Also comparing the two subsystems is entirely wrong. ReadDirectoryChangesW is still a polling mechanism, inotify and dnotify are kernel level events.

ReadDirectoryChangesW sleeps while there aren't any changes and only returns once there are some changes. Efficiency-wise there isn't any real difference between kernel-level events and sleeping on a different thread, and I don't see one as clearly better than the other. After all, waking a thread up is also a kernel-level event!

> Not only that but you still need a password for single user mode, and it would take a bit longer for him if he had a boot disk.

Who cares? The difference in the level of security you get is a small epsilon. You either don't care about physical attacks, in which case you don't care whether it takes 5 seconds or 5 minutes to break, or you do care about physical attacks, in which case you encrypt your data.

Of course, your entire point is irrelevant -- calling Windows 9x "on the top of it's [sic] game" in terms of security is lying. Windows 9x was insecure in much more serious ways than a stupid login prompt. Windows NT-based systems, especially Vista onwards, are much more effectively designed.

> This isn't about Microsoft Research, this is about Microsoft products. This is a completely irrelevant point.

You used the words "success" and "innovation". The fact that MSR exists and is as good as it is, is an important part of Microsoft's success as a whole, and there's no lack of innovation on display there (witness Street Slide for a recent example). To consider "success" and "innovation" only in terms of released products is myopic.




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